CASH PLEDGE ON THAMES FLOOD SCHEMES
 

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Funding towards flood prevention schemes along the Thames has been announced by the Government -  among more than 1,400 across projects the country which will cost £2.3 billion over the next six years.

Projects along the river include :

  • An extra £42 million towards Oxford’s Western Conveyance scheme.
  • Extra £60 million towards the cost of the Lower Thames Scheme planned from Datchet to Teddington.
  • and £196 million for prevention works in London and the Thames Estuary.

Chief Secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander said: "We all saw the destruction and heartache caused by flooding last year and that is why this investment is vital to build up Britain's defences for the future.

"The projects will protect some of the country's most at risk locations ensuring that we will be as prepared as possible for future severe weather.''

Despite the announcement some of the schemes have yet to be fully funded.

The extra money for the Oxford scheme means £118m has been committed to the £125m scheme.
The Western Conveyance will run from a flood-prone area off  Botley Road to the  Thames at Sandford Lock and is designed to divert water away from the city.

Oxfordshire County Council deputy leader Rodney Rose told the Oxford Mail: “It looks like we are going to be successful now. It’s what we were hoping for. Let’s get cracking and speed up getting it done.”

Downstream in Berkshire, Surrey and West London the £300 million Lower Thames Scheme  will receive a total of £220 million public investment.

This means the Government will fund around 75% of the current estimated costs, with local authorities and other partners meeting the remaining cost.

This scheme will reduce the flood risk in Windsor and Maidenhead, Spelthorne, Runnymede, Elmbridge, Kingston upon Thames and Richmond. It will protect up to 15,000 households when completed

'Long suffering residents'

Chancellor George Osborne said: ““Households sitting along the Lower Thames were badly hit by last winter’s storms, which were a reminder of the threat we face from flooding. That's why we are investing record amounts in Britain’s flood defence systems."

Runnymede and Weybridge MP Philip Hammond, who is the Prime Minister’s Flood Recovery Envoy for the Thames Valley, said: “This is great news for the long-suffering inhabitants of Surrey and Berkshire who live in constant fear of the Thames bursting its banks.  The extra cash means that, at long last, the scheme will go ahead and we will enjoy a permanent solution to the scourge of river flooding.”

The Thames estuary tidal flood defence system extends from Teddington to Sheerness in Kent and Shoeburyness in Essex,

It is formed from more than 3,500 schemes and defences including the Thames Barrier. And is designed to prevent tidal flooding through to 2100.

Story dated December 2nd 2014

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